Oct 03, 2023  
2019-2020 Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog 
2019-2020 Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Physical Therapy, D.P.T.

The program is designed to prepare the student for entry-level doctoral practice as a physical therapist. Graduates are employed in a variety of settings, including hospitals, rehabilitation centers and private physical therapy clinics. The Doctor of Physical Therapy program is open to all college graduates who have met prerequisite requirements and demonstrate sufficient preparation, potential for professional education and ability to perform the essential functions needed to practice as a physical therapist as determined by physical therapy faculty review of admission documents. Admission shall be granted on a competitive basis; meeting the admission requirements qualifies an individual for, but does not guarantee admission to the program.

Admission Requirements

  1. Complete the university application to be admitted with graduate standing by the deadline of January 15 and complete the PTCAS application by the application deadline November 1 for admission the following summer.
  2. Submit to the university and PTCAS results of the General Aptitude Section of the Graduate Record Examination (quantitative, verbal, and analytical), taken within the past 5 years.
  3. Provide PTCAS with three letters of recommendation attesting to the potential for success as a physical therapist and/or the scholarly potential of the applicant;
    • At least one letter must be from a physical therapist with whom the applicant had a professional association, and
    • One from a professor for a prerequisite course which the applicant completed.
    • If the applicant previously has been employed, the third letter should be from an employer.
    • If the applicant previously has not been employed, the third letter should be from a physical therapist with whom the applicant had a professional association.
  4. Provide documentation of knowledge of physical therapy through a minimum of 100 documented hours of paid or volunteer experience under the direct supervision of a licensed physical therapist; and
  5. Provide a written statement of purpose reflecting the applicant’s commitment to physical therapy.
  6. Meet prerequisite requirements


  1. Hold, or be eligible to hold, an acceptable baccalaureate degree from an institution accredited by a regional accrediting association or have completed equivalent academic preparation as determined by an appropriate campus authority, by the end of the spring semester prior to admission to the program.
  2. Have attained a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.0 (A=4.0),
  3. Have been in good academic, professional, and clinical standing at the last institution and if applicable in the last entry-level physical therapist educational program attended,
  4. Successfully have completed the following courses with a minimum of “C” and a minimum grade point average of 3.0 by the end of the fall semester prior to the year of admission to the program. No course may be repeated more than once and no more than 3 prerequisite courses may be repeated. CR/NC grades, correspondence courses, or independent study courses cannot be used for prerequisite requirements. Only 2 classes may be in progress during the fall semester of application and all prerequisite courses must be completed by the end of the Fall semester of application.

Natural Sciences:

Biological Sciences:


Take the following:

Behavioral Sciences:

Take the following:


Admission shall be granted on a competitive basis; meeting the admission requirements qualifies an individual for, but does not guarantee admission to the program.


  1. Maintain a 3.0 or better grade point average in all graduate work completed.
  2. Make continuous satisfactory progress toward the degree objective.

Advancement to Candidacy

  1. Satisfy the general University requirements for advancement to candidacy.
  2. Obtain classified status.
  3. Have earned a minimum 3.0 grade-point average in all program graduate work as well as a minimum overall 3.0 in all graduate work attempted.
  4. Fulfill the Graduation Writing Assessment Requirement (GWAR) by scoring 11 or higher on the Writing Proficiency Exam (WPE) or earning a score of 4.0 on the Analytical Writing Component of the GRE.
  5. Complete a minimum of one semester (fall session) of graduate level coursework in the program.
  6. Be enrolled during the term in which advancement to candidacy takes place.
  7. Obtain approval for one’s individual program plan from the Graduate Advisor and then from the Associate Dean of the College of Health and Human Services.

Qualifying Assessment

  1. Successfully complete the Doctoral Project Proposal Paper and Oral Presentation.
  2. Earn good standing in the clinical education program (beginner status on Clinical Performance Instrument [CPI] for DPT 781 ).
  3. Demonstrate adherence to the essential physical, emotional and professional practice expectations of a physical therapist in the classroom and clinic (entry level on CPI skills 1 and 2 for DPT 781 , acceptable practice in the following:

Requirements for Clinical Coursework

Criminal background check, health insurance, titers and immunizations, medical clearance, malpractice insurance, CPR certification (lifesaving course with lab), and adhering to the department essential functions are required for clinical coursework.

Admittance to Terminal Clinical Internships

Successfully complete Didactic Curriculum

Degree Requirements

The Doctor of Physical Therapy degree program is a 119 to 120-unit, three year, full-time cohort program including summer sessions and 18 units of internship.


Take all of the following courses:

Take a total of 6 units of each of the following:

Take a total of 4 units of the following: